Food, OK - Customer Service - Lacking (bad waitress). Spur of the moment stop, with my BF, at Zapata's Mexican Restaurant in Collinsville, IL . We had never been there before, but figured ok to grab a bite and have a drink. The appearance was quaint, but large, like a cantina but double or triple in size. Decor was colorful and fit the environment. We were greeted at the door by friendly faces. BF and I are an interracial couple, so I always notice if people get up tight or whatnot. If any bad vibes, I leave....did not happen. We were seated with smiles and given menus. Our waitress approaches and with barely a greeting, asks "Do you know what you want to drink?" I just cracked open the menu, had not been there before and wanted to at least look before ordering anything. We asked for a few moments and she just turned and left. She came back, literally 2 minutes later and we gave our orders...for some reason I ordered a pina colada and the bf had the more appropriate magarita. His drink was decent and I could at least smell the alcohol in it. Mine was smooth, creamy, delicious, but did not have a hint of hooch! I did not complain. She took our order by memory and pointed her finger in our faces as she repeated the order like scolding children individually and then walked away. What a memory tactic! So cold and impersonal, as if she really hated being a waitress. She came back with our orders. Sizzling fajitas, she just about set in my lap! I am used to being served to the side of me and a plate put in front of me in order to assemble the fajita....I have been to a few mexican or mexican/american restaurants and it has been this way several times. She set it there as if she really did not care if i burned myself or steamed my glasses since she set it so close to my face! Ok, I survived...that was really nothing.....but what really got to me that 15 minutes after bringing out the food, while we were in the middle of eating, she asked if we wanted to wrap our food up to go! WTF? I was not expecting some ritzy service or anything special. But I do expect a smile from the waitress and at least an introduction. She never told us her name nor did she have on a name tag. So hey fat, white chick, wit the really wide ass and long greasy dark hair, that waited on the interracial couple tonight, learn how to smile even when you don't feel like it and at least act like you want a tip! That's how it works. I don't know if it was the interracial thing (I really don't think that it was) or if you were just having a bad day. We only walked into the restaurant for service and did not cause any issues...but you treated us like a problem from the start! Learn some kinda customer service skills or find a job where you don't have to deal with people. As we were leaving after being rushed out by the waitress, the bar side of the place was full and karaoke may have been going on. We may have stayed for more drinks and entertainment had we been able to enjoy the meal at our own pace. Will not be back....the food was not nearly good enough to support that ignorant waitress.....
Honestly, the worst mexican food I've ever tasted.. We have passed through Collinsville many times over the years during 'road trips' and family vacations. Every experience we had previously in this town was a good one, until last week. Zapata's has now become our family's token word for "bad, scary food". On the outside, the building is bright and welcoming. However, do not be decieved! Once you walk through the doors everything changes. The bathrooms are hideous at best. You're lucky if you find toilet paper, paper towels, and a stall that latches all the way. Plus, they're dirty. Once seated at our table we were served a fowl tasting brown liquid they like to pass off as "salsa". The chips were stale as well. We decided to give the food another chance and optimistically place our orders. (PS- order bottled water, don't drink the tap.) Our food finally arrived. My son ordered cheese enchilada's, but there was a pile of shredded meat of some sort on top of them and very little cheese. My sons friend ordered quesadillas and there was so little filling in them that they were almost completely flat and tasted dry. My sister ordered a taco salad. (Can't mess that up, right? Wrong! The meat wasn't completely cooked and the entire shell was soggy. I ordered tacos. The meat wasn't completely cooked and was 'mushy'. (?) The hard shell was the worst I've ever tasted. No flavor, just thick, stale and bland. The guacamole was so thin- it poured out like green water. At this point, we'd all had enough. Contrary to what another 'reviewer' listed here stated, we are indeed good tippers. Usually 20 to 25%. We are also not demanding. We simply expect the food we pay for to be edible and flavorful. We left after one or two bites each. Although she was slow, we felt that our server was fairly decent and we didn't want to cause her a problem, so we paid for our lousy food and also left a tip since we felt it wasn't primarily our servers fault. We'll never eat there again. Enter at your own risk!!!
Great place to eat.. We ate there Feb 6, 2009 for the noon buffet and the food was great, the food was same as when we ate there Feb. 1st 2008. We go there every year for the Wood Working Show that's near by and always eat ate Zapata's.
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